Shape control in engineering of polymeric nanoparticles for therapeutic delivery
Nanoparticle-mediated delivery of therapeutics holds great potential for the diagnosis and treatment of a wide range of diseases. Significant advances have been made in the design of new polymeric nanoparticle carriers through modulation of their physical and chemical structures and biophysical properties. Nanoparticle shape has been increasingly proposed as an important attribute dictating their transport properties in biological milieu. In this review, we highlight three major methods for preparing polymeric nanoparticles that allow for exquisite control of particle shape. Special attention is given to various approaches to controlling nanoparticle shape by tuning copolymer structural parameters and assembly conditions. This review also provides comparisons of these methods in terms of their unique capabilities, materials choices, and specific delivery cargos, and summarizes the biological effects of nanoparticle shape on transport properties at the tissue and cellular levels.
- This article is part of the themed collection: Polymeric biomaterials for cancer nanotechnology